Ask a girl

hi everyone!

Recently started using this website again (PE recruiting lol) after a really long time and wow things have changed. Came across some pretty ridiculous posts with horrible stereotypes about women/women in banking/dating/what do women want etc. I can't claim to speak for all women but I would love to answer any questions/give Insights from the female perspective. So AMA about banking, dating, recruiting advice etc. 

About me: First year analyst at a NY BB. Liberal arts college graduate and Math/Econ major. Born outside the US and have lived in multiple countries. 

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Comments (170)

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Mar 4, 2021 - 8:56pm

Ngl it gets hard. The analysts that I know who're in happy relationships are the relationships that have carried on from college/ even High school and there's a solid enough foundation for there to be space for sacrifices. I think it's important to be with someone who's ambitious/committed to their own goals/has a life outside of the relationship so that they'll be understanding of your goals and hours. Also good communication is key. If you're already in a relationship, have an honest conversation and tell your partner about what the next two years of your life will look like (convey to them that you're very committed to the relationship but you might not be able to spend as much time together and you'll appreciate their support). Also wfh has given analysts a lot of flexibility in a sense that many of them are currently living with their partners and are able to spend a lot of time together 

Personally, I liked this guy from college. We both moved to NY after graduation, went out a few times but he "broke up" with me because he wanted to hang out every day and that just wasn't possible. With crazy hours plus covid restrictions, dating has been really hard. Haven't been on a date in a year lol 

  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Mar 4, 2021 - 11:20pm

Commenting as a first year in a relationship. Not easy but worth it. I would imagine impossible if we lived in the same city. She's 3-4 hours away and is a nurse, so comes to visit for Thursday/Friday - Sunday maybe once a month because she doesn't work a regular M-F. It's hard on her that I can't visit her, but I was very open about what my life would be like before I started. 

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Mar 4, 2021 - 8:49pm

What qualities do girls look for in guys? Is the emphasis on physical appearance less, more or about the same compared to how guys emphasize physical appearance for girls?

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  • Intern in IB - Ind
Mar 4, 2021 - 10:07pm

for me at least (early 20s woman), appearance matters so far as there is a certain bar to be passed (mostly revolving around basic body shape / physique (i.e. not overweight), physical hygiene / cleanliness, etc.) but with time I've realized I don't have a "type" (be it hair color, height, or other more minute details) because w/ the right personality and chemistry, I've become attracted to guys who I never before would've called particularly attractive just seeing on the street

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Mar 4, 2021 - 10:35pm

OP here. So I'll agree with the comment above. I am sure physical attraction matters for everyone to an extent but I don't have a particular type (in terms of physical appearance) that I am attracted to. I have heard my male colleagues say things like she's a six/having very specific types.  Never heard my female friends saying stuff like that so I guess most women aren't thaaaat particular about looks (at least women that I know). Also in terms of personality traits: Nice/sweet (you'd be surprised at how hard it is to find that), smart, ambitious (at least for me), intellectual/emotional compatibility etc 

Mar 5, 2021 - 8:54am

Surprised nobody has pointed out that this saying assumes that the fisherman is actually able to catch a certain number of each type of fish. If the fisherman brings in a big haul but it's only 2 or 3 different species, than that fisherman knows nothing about how to catch the other 20 varieties in the pond. And from an optimization perspective it's better to go after the uncompeted 20, since you know you won't be at heads with the experienced fisherman.

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  • Intern in IB - Gen
Mar 5, 2021 - 3:08pm

So fuck girls nobody else wants? Ok prospect

edit: I see your point that different fisherman are skilled are catching different types of fish. I had originally thought you were recommending going after fish nobody else was even trying to catch. I'm leaving my original comment for posterity

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Mar 4, 2021 - 10:27pm

Hmmm I'd say definitely go in with that know it all condescending tone and also be sure to say cringey things like the fish analogy above and you should be all set : )

Mar 4, 2021 - 10:52pm

The fact that the fish analogy got "Most Helpful" should be humbling. Maybe you're the one who has the "know it all" attitude.

Edit: I'm getting a lot of monkey shit, but I stand by what I wrote. If I ever need advice, I would go to a guy because he is in my same position. A woman does not know what it takes to impress another woman. She's been on the receiving end, but she's never done it before.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Mar 4, 2021 - 10:29pm

Hey I wasn't referring to this thread in particular. Just the general rhetoric surrounding women particularly women in banking on this website 

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Mar 4, 2021 - 10:25pm

Hey good question! Network network network. School alums, random strangers on linked whoever. Also know which banks to target. Like I wouldn't spend time on Stifel or Barclays because I know they don't sponsor.  GS, CS, DB, almost all EBs sponsor so focus your networking efforts on them. BofA and JPM used to sponsor too but a junior from my college told me that they stopped this year so I am not sure. Also in your networking conversations, don't mention that you'll need sponsorship etc in the future or that's the first thing that they'll think about when they think if you. There are other things more interesting about you. Also super cliche but don't try to be like everyone else to fit in. You were raised in a different country and that gives you an interesting/unique perspective on so many things which.  Many of my interviews/networking conversations consisted of the other person asking about the finance scene in my country, my international experiences etc and I am pretty sure that made me stand out 

Mar 4, 2021 - 10:35pm

I just moved to a new city and a friend linked me up with a girl he went to college with and we had a great first date - we've hung out a few times since and it keeps getting better. We have lots of similar interests and have great conversation. We both work in pe and haven't really talked about work once - convo is very organic and refreshing. Issue is she's moving to a new city, albeit easily accessible by car, at the end of the year. Is it worth pursuing nip it early before it gets too serious?

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Mar 4, 2021 - 10:51pm

That's awesome!! I am so happy for you.

And Yes!!!! I really think you should continue seeing her if you both feel that way. End of the year is too far away to worry about right now. Get to know each other and see how it goes. It's rare to find people you connect. Also if things get serious, I am sure you'll find a way to make it work when she moves away (and hey just a car ride away isn't bad at all!). Good luck!

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Mar 4, 2021 - 10:48pm

Hi! I'm an international too. What was the H-1B process like for you? I just started the process and registered for the lottery.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Mar 4, 2021 - 11:02pm

Hey! This will be my first year registering for the lottery as well since I graduated last year. I think I am all set with my documents/USCIS account etc but I think they'll start accepting registrations on March 9? 

  • Intern in IB - CB
Mar 4, 2021 - 11:49pm

As someone who is an URM, I am familiar with banking diversity recruiting and I was wondering if that is also a thing for buy side recruitment. I've heard that being a woman is attractive given that most PE is male dominated, but I'm not sure about being Hispanic/Black Male for PE recruitment

I have a ton of questions but this seemed like the most important one

Thank you

Mar 5, 2021 - 2:07am

1. should I as a guy come to girls at the gym and ask them if they want to get to know each other? asking because everybody is wearing headphones and is obviously busy working out, but I see some crazy good-looking girls, so I'm thinking if I should give it a shot.

2. if somebody comes up to you on the street, how do you like the opener "hey, how are you doing? do you want to get to know each other?"? more classical approach is to say a compliment about appearance and then just start talking, but I don't want to force a conversation if the girl is not interested, so I'm thinking a direct question could be better.

3. what country are you from originally? if the country is too unique to name, then what continent or part of continent (like South-East Asia, for example)? asking because the answers on questions above can vary based on the culture.

Mar 5, 2021 - 9:55am

OSA

1) make an OBSERVATION  (in line at coffee shop) "i see you ordered a muffin with your coffee"

2) SHARE something about yourself tangentially related to your observation "i myself prefer a donut with my coffee...because they are more ergonomically fitted to dunk into the coffee"

3) ASK an open ended question related to your observation  "I'm looking to open my horizons.   what's better than reading a newspaper while drinking coffee and dunking a donut?"

or, at the grocery store

O) i see you chose kale

S) i know its healthy, but kale is so bitter tasting

A) am i going to hell if i fry my kale in salt?

or at the gym

O) wow, you just ran a half marathon / wow, you have perfect form with those weights...you should be a personal trainer as a side hustle

S) not gonna lie...i'm pretty sure you would beat me in a marathon

A) so, how bout them Mets?

these are all  silly / stupid examples...but they get you into a conversation...and that's half the battle...and you can probably do better, right?  Its all about what you see in the situation...

just google it...you're welcome
  • Intern in IB - Gen
Mar 5, 2021 - 9:55am

Kevin25

"hey, how are you doing? do you want to get to know each other?"

please do not say this. Conversations have to be organic

Mar 5, 2021 - 11:01am

yeah, I'm just thinking checking if the girl wants to talk at all (not busy at the moment, interested in me) would be better than forcing a conversation straight away, but I guess I'm wrong cause everybody says it's wrong :)

  • Assistant PM in AM - Other
Mar 9, 2021 - 7:55pm

Don't ever approach women at the gym. For me at least it's a massive turn-off. If you're lucky you might be able to catch her on the way out - that's a better approach. I stopped going to the gym because the men following me around as I switch stations, trying to chat me up and staring when I squat was just way too hostile of an environment. That was true even at my work gym (makes those elevator rides esp. awkward). For the record, I have been wearing a big-ass engagement ring for years (a replica of my real one), but clearly, that wasn't enough of a deterrent. I already get plenty of your annoying testosterone at work but at least I get paid for dealing with it; I'm at the gym to exercise not soak up your thirsty looks. My friend with the same problem at the specific gym that got me to the breaking point switched to an all-female gym and has lived happy since. I now work out exclusively at a pilates studio (mostly women) and have never gone to a regular gym since except when together with my husband. It's pretty sad actually, I really enjoyed lifting weights a couple times a week. BTW hotel gyms are the f***ing worst!

  • Works at Other
Mar 11, 2021 - 2:40am

I feel you... even nail polish colour becomes a topic of interest for men sliding up. Now at pilates / barre studios almost exclusively as well.

  • Works at Other
Mar 11, 2021 - 2:37am

1. Don't overthink the intro line. If she wants to talk to you, she'll talk to you so long as you don't sound stupid. If she doesn't want to talk to you, she simply won't. Imho (girl here too), it doesn't hurt to go up to her when she's taking a break and not busy, and just say that you've noticed her and want to know if she'd like to go on a date with you.

a. If she turns away or makes dismissive / avoidance gestures before you even have the chance to speak, it's a no, not an invitation to harass further.

b. Some people beat around the bush because they don't want to look "desperate" or are too shy, and unless she's already somewhat interested in you, it does not help your case. You're the one asking her out, so you have to put yourself out there. 

Other women may disagree, but I think that when they're being asked out by a stranger, it's basically a spilt second decision made by women. And it's going to be made based on fairly superficial reasons (probably just meeting certain minimum standards for height, physique, attractiveness and their overall impression of your sanity and intelligence). After all, you are a stranger, and you evaluated them on the exact same things before deciding to ask them out.

Don't take it personally if they say no.

  • Analyst 1 in AM - Equities
Mar 5, 2021 - 9:45am

aint nobody finna ask u shit lmao

u sound like some kind of condescending older cousin 

Mar 9, 2021 - 12:35pm

grieze

On a side note, this is perhaps the greatest single episode of South Park ever.

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Mar 5, 2021 - 9:48am

Do the people here actually spend so little time with women that they need to ask these sorts of questions? This actually explains a lot of the behavior you see on these forums.

Pro tip: not treating women like they are some sort of alien species gets you like 75% of the way there, kids. 

Mar 5, 2021 - 11:41am

I feel like it is weird to consciously "try" in something like this. You know what type of person you are, you know what type of person you are attracted to. Everything will fall in line.

"Work ethic, work ethic" - Vince Vaughn

  • Works at Other
Mar 11, 2021 - 2:57am

Men don't realise most of the challenges we face, period. It doesn't benefit most of them to. The only time we catch their attention in the workplace is when they want to hit on us or we beat out a less qualified individual to a job / promotion, and then he starts complaining about diversity programmes reducing the opportunities of men. Anyway, some challenges are: 

1. Getting hit on / perved on / sexually harassed at work. This always happens.

2. Plenty of quiet sexists automatically assume that we're less capable than a male peer (even if we trained that male peer because he was useless)

3. The effects on our physical health are worse than it is for guys. Our hormonal systems are way more complex

4. Having to deal with the type of people that inspired OP to make this thread, in real life

5. Networking or even just building rapport with senior bankers can be hard because they tend to be on the extremes: either they like activities that we can't participate in, or they're terrified of getting accused of sexual harassment and conversations are very one dimensional. It helps when they have kids and I've met their wives and families because at least I can ask how they are doing (if they're not the type of sexist shits that don't give an iota about their families, in which case, I never bother trying to network with them)

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  • Intern in IB - Ind
Mar 5, 2021 - 12:29pm

This is the cringiest thread being answered by a girl that's def going to be single at 35 still trying to tell guys what assholes they are

MS all you want

  • Works at Other
Mar 11, 2021 - 3:04am

Or a guy who has a low shot at being a thrice divorced MD at 55, crying on friday and saturday nights to young 20 yos who have no intention of giving him what he wants, about how his exes were ungrateful whores who didn't understand that all that neglect, disrespect and fighting that he put them through were necessary for him to build his career. How he saved them from being that 35 yo woman he didn't marry who doesn't have to deal with any of that bullshit.

Marriage actually improves the happiness of men and reduces the happiness of women, no amount of MS is going to change that fact either lol.

I'm in my mid twenties and if I make it to 35 still single, I'm just going to smugly drink my tea.

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  • Intern in IB - Ind
Mar 11, 2021 - 3:25am

One of the worst attempts at a roast I've ever seen.  You def proved my point though.  Sorry my four line response hurt you so much.  Maybe it wasn't me - maybe it was your father.  Wanna talk about it?

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Mar 5, 2021 - 3:17pm

Yeah basically they like you for being a beta provider but still fuck Chad (who barely had a job in years) on the side while you fix Powerpoints at 2AM on a Friday night

  • Assistant PM in AM - Other
Mar 9, 2021 - 8:06pm

Doesn't have to be A or B. Smart women find someone with good disposable income, time and taste to spend that disposable income on them. Most men don't fall into that category tho..

  • Works at Other
Mar 11, 2021 - 3:05am

Yeah, then they say that such men don't exist because evidently they and the rest of their social circle don't fulfil that criteria. Then they also wonder why they can't find a woman who wants to marry them

Mar 5, 2021 - 6:54pm

I know this is a really embarrassing question and I'm ashamed to ask, but since I'm anon I guess I can only benefit from this. How does a man connect with a woman? Like with guys, it's rather easy to find a common interest with sports, cars, politics, etc... ("classic" guy stuff), but I really struggle finding stuff to connect with women over. It seems like you all are so different from me, that aside from very boring and obvious connections (college, work, school), there isn't much to talk about. Idk... would appreciate any advice.....

Mar 5, 2021 - 7:15pm

I know this is a joke, but I'm genuinely looking for some help. I want to be able to have relationships (intimate/non-intimate) with women and I honestly can't. It's just so awkward having literally nothing to talk about outside of work/school/boring shit. Lol...............

Mar 9, 2021 - 4:21pm

Definitely don't listen to that other guy lol. There are so many things that both guys and girls can be interested in. I find music is often a good one but that maybe is just me since I'll admit I listen to a lot of indie stuff that probably skews more female. Another good one could be travel. Also, in my experience women are often extremely politically engaged, although this is sometimes a topic I avoid since most women I know are significantly left of my beliefs-- and, believe it or not, there are some women out there who like sports too. At the end of the day I think you just need to make sure you see women as other human beings...which a lot of the people in this thread seem to be struggling with. 

  • Works at Other
Mar 11, 2021 - 3:10am

Start by being interested in what someone else does, even if it's something completely different from what you do.

Start being interested in them as people and what they do in their daily lives.

If you don't want to / think that that's too much time and effort, then I guess you're just trying to talk to them to get laid, and your chances of making an actual connection are going to go down.

Women are just as likely to have an interest in politics, however if you don't know someone well, this isn't always a great area to start talking to them about, because it's such a divisive topic and they may not want to share their views that early on. 

Ask them about their hobbies (good chance to figure out if you two are gonna click), slowly warm up the conversation so that you can ask about things like family, friends, etc. A good (and willing) conversationalist will know how to pass the ball back to you on most topics.

Mar 5, 2021 - 7:01pm

please no more questions my face is hurting with cringing. 

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  • Analyst 1 in AM - Equities
Mar 5, 2021 - 8:58pm

read ur post a second time, its such cringe haah

can picture exactly the kind of person u are - u view the world from what feels like a righteous, superior perspective b/c of the way you've been indoctrinated to perceive yourself

how many cats u got girl - or if u have a bf, does he pick up the newspaper with his mouth  

Controversial
Mar 5, 2021 - 10:33pm

it's really funny how a lot of the discourse about women on WSO centers around "what if the most qualified candidate (who is always a MAN!!) gets passed over for a FEMALE because of DIVERSITY PROGRAMS" and not on the blatant sexism that is rampant in this industry. nobody wants to admit that there's unconscious bias against women, including this outdated and asinine assumption that men and women are from different planets.

All this to say, when you browse through WSO, this forum that represents a decent subsection of the overall banking/PE/HF industry, and you encounter this level of sexism, how could it ever be possible that these diversity programs exist if not ONLY to overcome the blatant and/or unconscious biases the males have against women. You males really despise women, and you probably aren't even fully aware of it. What is it like to hate the people that you're also desperately horny for? Could not be my gay ass.

  • Intern in IB - Ind
Mar 6, 2021 - 11:25am

Lol imagine reading a ridiculous internet post titled "ask a girl" with posts asking about how to talk to women (comical) and extrapolating that out to rampant sexism and hatred for women after the OP gets flamed

Mar 6, 2021 - 8:00pm

unconscious bias lmao. ok lets ignore millions of years of evolution with males dominating the social group throughout because someone coined the term unconscious bias. males are superior to women in business for the most part.

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  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Mar 8, 2021 - 11:11am

shut up dawg thats some garbage no shit ur gay if u saying that type of bs 

Mar 9, 2021 - 12:39pm

throwingawaying123

it's really funny how a lot of the discourse about women on WSO centers around "what if the most qualified candidate (who is always a MAN!!) gets passed over for a FEMALE because of DIVERSITY PROGRAMS" and not on the blatant sexism that is rampant in this industry. nobody wants to admit that there's unconscious bias against women, including this outdated and asinine assumption that men and women are from different planets.

All this to say, when you browse through WSO, this forum that represents a decent subsection of the overall banking/PE/HF industry, and you encounter this level of sexism, how could it ever be possible that these diversity programs exist if not ONLY to overcome the blatant and/or unconscious biases the males have against women. You males really despise women, and you probably aren't even fully aware of it. What is it like to hate the people that you're also desperately horny for? Could not be my gay ass.

You're obviously not fluent yet in Woke. "Blatant sexism" and "unconscious bias" are contradictions in terms. You need to brush up on wokespeak. 

Array

Mar 10, 2021 - 11:32pm

You done virtue signaling? I'm not sure if you're aware, but there's this website called Twitter dedicated entirely for that, maybe try posting there instead.

Mar 7, 2021 - 4:21pm

Itt: wut like to be gurl op???

op, op.. ooh ohh, op... wut boy do??

ooh ooh ohoh op... r u qt gurl?

heister:

Look at all these wannabe richies hating on an expensive salad.

https://arthuxtable.com/
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Mar 8, 2021 - 4:42pm

a lot going on here, will try to not add to the cringe. I'm curious from a cultural standpoint about a couple of things.

assuming you've discussed this with your friends, what's the pressure to get married & have kids like? is there still an expectation to find a mate by a certain age? what about children?

how would you define toxic masculinity? this term didn't exist until a few years ago and I still don't quite get it. have you seen it in the workplace? out of the workplace? give me an example if you're comfortable.

among you and your friends, is promiscuity the new norm? like the pressure to put out early and often because of tinder/bumble/etc.? what I define as promiscuity here is having sex on the first date when you kinda sorta don't want to/aren't ready but do so because the guy has options and other girls most definitely will.

if you majored in math, you're too smart for banking. what's the long term plan?

also, I'm curious about cultures, so I wonder - what languages do you speak? has this been helpful/neutral in your career?

  • Works at Other
Mar 11, 2021 - 3:23am

Not OP, but also a woman:

how would you define toxic masculinity? 

Just look at this thread bro... it wasn't named till a while back, but it's always been here

assuming you've discussed this with your friends, what's the pressure to get married & have kids like? is there still an expectation to find a mate by a certain age? what about children?

Varies, but the pressure is less in previous generations because we don't need to get married to support ourselves. The people who make jokes about being left on the shelf are actually guys. Specifically to stressful careers like law and finance, some of my friends (and myself), think that it might actually be better to have kids etc later when you're a SVP / MD so that you can spend more time with them.

It has to be balanced with the whole eggs-going-to-die worry (which again, I've mostly got from exes who insisted that we pop out kids before 30. Funny thing that all the angsty incels here don't want to acknowledge / don't know: male fertility also declines with age. You're capable of producing sperm throughout your life, buy your fertility can take a nose dive. Sperm quality definitely does)

ALSO, there is actually a whole generation ahead of us who have had to do 2 jobs at once because men are still generally shit at taking care of the household, but now don't even want to combine finances / bring home the bread. It's a cautionary tale and I think a growing number of women would rather be single than end up like that. Not going to sacrifice my sanity to have someone's kids and run the household so that at age 45 we divorce and he spends the money on smart 20 yo girls from emerging countries who know what they're doing. Seen too many ex colleagues do that to their wives.

is promiscuity the new norm? like the pressure to put out early and often because of tinder/bumble/etc.?

No. What is the new norm is the amount of low quality dates that you'll get from guys if you use those platforms because it's a numbers game for them. 

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Mar 11, 2021 - 3:25am

everything you're saying is a breath of fresh air. I have a couple questions and a couple comments as a follow up

1. on toxic masculinity - have you noticed this in real life? part of me feels like most of the dudes who talk about redpilled bullshit and masculine this or that in absolute terms don't actually believe what they're saying. if this thread is what's actually being thought of by young men, then I get it. I think there's a healthy balance between "redpilled bro, man wasn't meant to have one mate" and being a woke male feminist who doesn't have shoulder muscles. a follow up - what would you define as healthy masculinity?

2. I'm glad to hear about the lessening of pressure to procreate. I get the biological aspects of that, but you're right, it's often men speaking to women as if they'll age like wine and women age like milk. I get the household thing too, division of labor is important and it's sad more dudes don't get that, but whatever, their loss. 20 year olds are boring as fuck and have the conversational skills of a piece of furniture, I've never gotten that.

3. I'm really glad to hear it's not the new norm. while I personally know several people who have met their spouses via tinder/bumble, I know many more who just use it for sex. glad I missed all of that and started dating my wife before smartphones.

4. final question - what are your thoughts on the trend towards women's accomplishments being touted because one is a woman rather than on merit alone? I saw an interesting post by an entrepreneur who basically said "stop calling me a female founder, call me a founder," the idea being that (in her opinion) highlighting gender only divides, it doesn't unite and it runs the risk of having an invisible asterisk next to one's accomplishments. I have no clue how I feel about it, just wanting a different perspective.

  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Mar 11, 2021 - 3:25am

As another female analyst here I gotta say this is the most accurate thread on this whole post. It's so stressful thinking about marriage / kids and I spend time every day thankful that I'm still in my early 20's and don't have to worry about the ticking time clock yet. 

Also, if there's anything this pandemic has highlighted it's how little working mothers are supported across the workforce. It's appalling to me the way many of them have just been steamrolled for an entire year with no assistance, and makes it seem so much less appealing to have kids. As someone who's always worked towards having a career, the idea of all of a sudden pivoting to be a full-time homemaker is unappealing because it fundamentally does not fit into the goals I have for my own life. Like many of my friends, I want kids, but only if I can have them and my career (or really just something more than being a housewife) -- because if not, what was the point of the past 25 years? I don't mean this as slander against homemakers -- that's what my mother did and I know for a fact that she is immensely tougher than me in many regards -- but it just doesn't fit into the goals I was encouraged to have and have worked towards my whole life (be independent, be successful, etc.). 

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